I’m considering doing something I have no business doing – writing a Young Adult Paranormal Novel. But, I’ve always heard you’re supposed to write what you know, and I just don’t know about young adults. I won’t reveal how many decades ago I was one, but suffice it to say I could use the excuse that I’ve forgotten over the years. Truth is, at that age I was engaged in activities that promote memory loss, so if it was only yesterday I still wouldn’t recall. So if I tried to submerge myself in that world to write about it, I’d most likely fail.
I shouldn’t even read the stuff, but I do. I was seduced into the genre last year by Richelle Mead, one of my favorite adult paranormal authors. I’d read all of her Succubus series and was waiting for the next Dark Swan book to come out. I needed some more Richelle, so I broke down and tried her Vampire Academy novels. A few chapters with Rose Hathaway and I was hooked. Now my kindle is full of YA books, read or waiting to be.
My friends think I’m a dirty old man. Okay, this is not the place to argue that point. The thing is, if you take a teenage girl, already crazy by definition, and imbue her with supernatural powers… heh-heh, you’re in for a wild ride.
As a writer, it must be nice to have a character like that. Need her to go off half-cocked and do something to create some drama? Just have someone tell her not to. Need to create some romance? Just have another character forbid her to see the guy. Teenage girls are predictably unpredictable, which makes for exciting reading.
My characters, on the other hand, are too damn mature. They’re likely to accept the advice of someone in authority and if a love is forbidden, they’ll consider why and accept it. They’re too logical and they have too much control over their hormones.
Case in point, I’m on the third re-write of a scene where I’ve put two women interested in the same man together in an antagonistic situation. Cat fight guaranteed, right? Wrong. They keep talking it out and coming up with a workable compromise! I can’t have that. What am I going to do, have the gods intervene? Actually, that might work, but if they were both seventeen…